An Antidote for Holiday Homeschool Overwhelm: Dealing with Expectations

Overwhelm is typical during the holidays as we deal with our great expectations.

Last Mother’s Day, my kids were cooking up a storm while my husband worked an emerg shift for the first time ever on a Mother’s Day.

For many years, I didn’t request anything for myself on my birthday, at Christmas, or on Mother’s Day. It felt kind of selfish. (Despite me routinely asking every other person in the house what they want for special occasions.)

I offer you an antidote for holiday homeschool overwhelm: dealing with expectations.

Sometimes, we expect our kids and partner to READ OUR MINDS.

(If they really loved me, they would buy me a bouquet of flowers, or Purdy’s Sea Salt Caramel Dark Chocolates (not to be specific), or fluffy socks and a period fiction novel.)

I’ve learned that…

  • not every mom cares about every holiday,
  • some moms feel disappointed by inattentive partners,
  • some moms feel downright invisible to their families,
  • and I’ve learned that this is common.
This means that…
  • if you are a mom that doesn’t care about holidays, you won’t care about what I’m writing here,
  • if your partner can’t read your mind that would be because he/she is human and you might not have expressed your needs or desires,
  • and when you feel invisible…I ask you, why aren’t you requiring others to see you?


photograph of a person hiding gifts: christmas expectations

We need to own our unrealistic expectations. Or declare them.

My family knows I very much appreciate the homemade cards with genuine sentiments and a day off from cleaning the kitchen or prepping any food whatsoever.

If you have a partner, family member, or child that repeatedly misses the boat in honouring Mother’s Day or your birthday, (& it matters to you), then you need to let your partner, mother, or best friend know how you would like to be honoured.

Straight up: “Hey, honey, can I tell you something important to me? It means a lot to me to have you acknowledge me on Mother’s Day. Here’s how you could honour me…”

Sometimes we set ourselves up for disappointment because we set unrealistic expectations for others (like expecting others to read our minds & magically know what’s important to us, no matter how long we’ve been together).

Sometimes we don’t state our preferences outright, because we assume it’ll cause conflict.

Time to declare that we have needs and desires too!

So I’m going to offer you straight talk.

ps You can access a free class on managing your unrealistic holiday expectations in the Facebook group, the Homeschool Mama Support Group.



If this is your experience, I’m going to suggest you may have a relationship issue

If you’re familiar with this dynamic, you have a relationship issue that needs to be addressed. 

Maybe it’s a boundary issue, maybe you haven’t declared who you are or what you need, maybe you don’t know what you need, or maybe you’re accustomed to giving but not receiving, or maybe…you-fill-in-the-blank.

When your relationship needs aren’t being addressed, you won’t be energy-fueled to do this homeschool life thing.

Of course, I’m not suggesting that your expectation that a bottle of champagne, a picnic basket, and a hot air balloon with fireworks for your mothering efforts be met every year.

(It’s probably unrealistic to fulfill soap-opera fantasies for most of us.)

But being in a relationship with unrealistic expectations or being in a relationship with someone who isn’t seeing us & honouring us is no way to honour ourselves either.

So what can you do to declare what you need or desire, to declare that you want to be seen, and to honour yourself too?



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Teresa Wiedrick
Teresa Wiedrick

I help overwhelmed homeschool mamas shed what’s not working in their homeschool & life, so they can show up authentically, purposefully, and confidently in their homeschool & life.